Author Archives: admin

Yellow Perch

Yellow Perch

Common name: Yellow perch

Scientific name: Perca flavescens (Perca means “dusky”; flavescens means “becoming gold colored”)

Appearance: Brown and yellow on the sides, green to olive around the head, yellow perch have spiky fins, forked tails, and long snouts.

Distribution: Yellow perch have been stocked extensively throughout North America’s lakes and waterways.

Spawning: Yellow perch begin spawning in April or early May when water temperatures reach 45-50ºF. Females will scatterstrings of more than 100,000randomly over vegetation, where they are fertilized by males. Perch do not guard their eggs, and many of their defenseless fry are devoured by walleyes, pickerel, bass, andpike. Those that survive take cover in shallow weedbeds, where they eat plankton and insect larvae, eventually moving on to small fish and other perch.

Fishermen can catch huge numbers of perch during their spawning runs, a practice encouraged by many biologists who regard overcrowding as the leading threat to perch populations.

Angling: Bottom feeders with a preference for cooler water, yellow perch can be found in deeper water during the day, moving into the shallows towards sundown. Perch school by size, and sometimes by gender, ih groups often numbering over a hundred fish. Because of this, fishermen looking for perch needn’t make more than a couple of casts in any given spot before moving on: if there’s one perch in an area, there’s at least a dozen more, and one of them’s bound to bite.

Yellow perchwill eat just aboutanything,though theyespecially favorminnows,larvae, plankton, and worms. Live worms or minnows cast or trollednear rocks or weeds will hook large numbers of small perch, while spoons, spinners, and flies will attractlarger ones. Fly fishing for shallow-feeding perch is particularly effective late in the day. During the spawn, most any bait will work if you can get it close to a school of hyperactive perch. Perch are a favorite among ice fishermen, and can be found at depths of 15′ to 20′, feeding in schools just like the rest of the year. They can be found shallower on darker days or in areas where the ice is covered by snow.

Perch strike hard and quickly tire, making for an anticlimactic “fight”.But that’s quite all right, as perch are one of the best-tasting freshwater fish in North America, and boating a bunch will make for a shore lunch or dinner as memorable as any wall-mounted trophy.

White Bass

Common Name: White Bass, a.k.a. stripers, white lightning, barfish, striped bass (incorrectly), silver bass, striper, stripe, sandbass and sandy. Scientific Name: Morone chrysops Appearance: White bass resemble a shorter version of striped bass, though they do possess a few distinguishing features. Their bodies are silvery-white, marked by half a dozen or so dark, horizontal lines… Continue Reading

Walleye

Common name: Walleye, a.k.a. walleyed pike, doré, pike, jackfish, jack, and pickerel (note, however, that the walleye is not a pike, despite the names) Scientific name: Stizostedion vitreum (Stizostedion means “pungent throat” and vitreum means “glassy”, referring to the large eye. Appearance: Walleye have olive to brown bodies with a yellowish underbelly. Their most distinctive… Continue Reading

Splake

Common Name: Splake Scientific Name: Salvelinus fontinalis x S. namaycush Appearance: A man-made hybrid of female lake trout and male brook trout produced mainly in hatcheries, splake will exhibit any combination of the characteristics of their parent species. Because of this, hatcheries will often remove a fin from splake before releasing them to aid in… Continue Reading

Striped Bass

Common Name: Striped Bass a.k.a. striper, rock, rockfish, striped sea bass, striper bass, linesider, squid hound, greenhead. Scientific Name: Morone saxatilis Appearance: Dark olive to steel blue on top, with with silver sides and a white belly, striped bass get their name from seven to eight dark, horizontal bands that run the length of their… Continue Reading

Steelhead Trout

Common Name: Steelhead Trout Scientific Name: Oncorhynchus mykiss Appearance: A migratory, saltwater strain of rainbow trout, steelheads are generally sleeker in shape and more silver in colorthan regular rainbows. However, once in fresh water, steelies take on the same red-and-pink coloration as their cousins. Between this and thewidespread interbreeding between the two strains in fresh… Continue Reading

Smallmouth Bass

Common name: Smallmouth bass, a.k.a. black bass, smallie, redeye, bronzeback, brown bass, brownie. Scientific name: Micropterus dolomieu (Micropterus means “small fin”; dolomieu was named after M. Dolomieu, a French mineralogist. Appearance: A true bass, smallmouths are marked with dark, verticalstripes on greenish scales, with more dark bars around the eyes, radiating backwards. Their cheeks are… Continue Reading

Rock Bass

Common Name: Rock Bass, a.k.a. black perch, goggle-eye, rock sunfish, red eye, goggle-eye perch Appearance: Rock Bass have dark, mottled bodies that serve to camouflage them against a rocky backdrop, and rather large eyes adapted for hunting in low light conditions. Scientific Name: Ambloplites rupestris, rupestris meaning “living among rocks.” – like the largemouth bass,… Continue Reading

Rainbow Trout

Common Name: Rainbow Trout Scientific Name: Salmo gairdneri Appearance: Rainbow trout have a heavily spotted, silvery and/or green bodywith a large, unmistakable swath of purple, pink, and blue reflective stripes running towards their squared-off tails. Distribution: Ranging naturally across the northern Pacific between Mexico, Alaska, and East Asia, rainbows have been introudced to lakes and… Continue Reading

Pumpkinseed

Common Name: Pumpkinseed Scientific Name: Lepomis gibbosus, lepomis meaning “scaled gill” cover, and gibbosus meaning “wide margin.” Distribution: Though they’ve been introduced everywhere between the Pacific and Atlantic, pumpkinseed sunfish remain most abundant in their native range, which extends from the southern edge of eastern Canada down the coastline to the Carolinas. Given their oftentimes… Continue Reading